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How to choose lamps for your home

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Having proper lighting will bring out the best in your furniture. From textured fabric on throw pillows to the elaborately detailed coffee table sitting in the middle of your room, the right lighting will emphasize your furniture’s strongest details.

The easiest way to bring lighting into your home is with lamps. While passive and accent lighting are respectable options, lamps can give your home a far more sophisticated look.
When choosing lamps for your home, focus on the appearance and shape, take accurate measurements of surrounding furniture to balance the look, and find your preferred level of lighting.

Prioritize the appearance and choose the right shape

Lamps allow for some creativity as you decide on style. Much like throw pillows, you can have a different look for your lamps than your furniture and décor. Just make sure the colours and style are complementary.


The shape of the shade must match the base. If you have a round base, you can use an ovular-shaped shade. Angular bases mean angular shades. Conversely, colours and patterns, should contrast. You can easily use a single-coloured base with a patterned shade, or a detailed, ornate shade with a plain base.

Keep visual weight in mind. If you pick a lamp with a thin base, it won’t have the same presence as a thicker one. A striking look, however, may not be what you want in a lamp, as it may overpower the rest of your furniture and décor. With any lamp, you also must keep measurements and proportions in mind as you decide on shape and size.

Find a location and make accurate measurements

Before you make any measurements, figure out exactly where you want the lamp to go. Estimating where you think it belongs or how large it should be is one of the fastest ways to throw off the proportions of your room.


Measuring nearby pieces of furniture will ensure your lamp is a perfect fit for your room. A table lamp should be no more than half the height of the surface it sits on, except for bedside lamps, which should be a couple of inches taller to reach eye level. A lamp should never hang over the edge of the table. That can make it easier to knock over.

Different rooms have different alternatives to table lamps. A bedside table lamp can be replaced by stylish wall lamps, while ornate standing lamps are perfect for living rooms. Hanging lighting is also a fantastic option, though they should hang no lower than one foot from the tip of your fingers with your arm stretched towards the ceiling.

Find the brightness you’re looking for

Everyone has a different preference for how bright their lamps should be, or if the lighting should be warm or cool. If you want less light, choose a lamp with a thicker fabric lampshade, or invest in a dimmer to regulate the amount of light. A dimmer can also consume less energy, depending on how bright you set the lamps.

It’s also important to think carefully about the best places to put your bright and dim lamps. It’s about function and how much brightness you need in each location. Even if you’re not writing by hand, bright desk lamps are perfect for any home office or bedroom. Dimmed lights are perfect for a room with lots of natural lighting.

Deciding on which lamps to choose for your home should be a careful process. It’s important to find the best places for lighting from a practical and design standpoint. Be sure to prioritize the appearance and shape of your lamp, make accurate measurements to find the right location and size, and do what you can to find the best lighting for any room in your home.